Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Weeknight Whip-up!

Escarole & Beans
(also known as: Sa'roll N Beans in slang)

Like many other famous Italian entrees, this dish had a humble beginning. I've been told that the immigrants created this dish because it was fairly cheap to make and it would fill and warm you up at the same time.

This a pretty common Italian-American dinner, although I never ate it growing up, even though my mom is Italian. It is very popular in Rhode Island and the Italian-Americans often refer to it as Sa'roll N Beans.

It is one of the easiest dishes to make and so it is great for those busy work days when you don't have a lot of time to spend in the kitchen. I'm sure there are a lot of variations and opinions on how to make it, for example some people add diced baked ham. I add it sometimes, but here is my usual rendition!

P.S. the photo shows a lot more beans than I usually add and there is should be more liquid as well.

Escarole and Beans

1 bunch escarole, washed & chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 can white cannelini beans, drained & rinsed
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
3 tablespoons grated Parmigiano ( and/or the rind end of the cheese)
Crusty baguette for dipping

Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add salt and escarole and cook for about 10-12 minutes.
Drain and set aside. In a large skillet, on very low heat, add the olive oil and garlic. Let it heat for about 5 minutes to infuse the oil with the garlic flavor. Add the beans and escarole and heat for about 2-3 minutes. Add the chicken broth and (cheese rind if you have it) and cook on medium heat for about 5-10 minutes. Add the grated cheese, salt and pepper to taste.
Add more cheese if desired and enjoy with a slice of crusty bread!

How do you use escarole?


Unknown said...

I've never had escarole, but this looks like a wonderful winter dish! I'm going to have to try it!

Brilynn said...

Actually, I don't... There's no reason for it either, I've just never had it, I should fix that.

Deborah Eley De Bono said...

Never tried it. What does it taste like? Kale?

Annie said...

Claire, it is great for a cold night!

Brilynn, You do have to fix that, because it is really good.

Mooncrazy, Escarole kind of tastes like a mild spinach. Actually, you good make this dish with spinach if you wanted!

Sara said...

I don't think I've ever seen escarole before.

Sexy Lexi said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Sexy Lexi said...

I never had this growing up and my mom is italian, too, so I'm intrigued. I've never actually tried escarole, but I think I'm going to give this one a try, especially now that you compared it to spinach.

Thanks for the tip!

Annie said...

Sara, I can't believe you've never seen it before. It looks a lot like green leaf lettuce with a lighter bottom stem. You can eat it raw in salad too.

Lexi, It's amazing to me that no one has ever tried escarole, especially you! You have to try this recipe and let me know what you think!!

wheresmymind said...

I bet this would work with some of the kale we have...hrm...

Annie said...

wwm, Maybe. I'm not sure only because I have never cooked with kale.

Anonymous said...

this dish does wonders expecialy in winter days.Is good with escarole and also with spinach I personally had both and some ham in it ,you have a dinner dish.Thank you Annie.Bambola